Google This Week: December 2020 Core Update

by | Dec 4, 2020

Google This Week
7 min read

It’s finally happened! Today Google is rolling out the new December 2020 core update. It’s been 7 months since the last update and historically Google rolls out new core updates every few months. What else is new with Google This Week? Google is still focussing on Maps this week, with a bunch of new features being rolled out and tested.

ICYMI, here’s what happened at Google This Week:

Address Numbers Tested on Maps

Google appears to be testing displaying address numbers in the Google Maps user interface. Joy Hawkins first noticed the test and shared screenshots on Twitter. Hawkins said:

“Google Maps is now showing address numbers directly on the map. This is a super helpful feature!”

Address Numbers Tested on Maps

Podcast Carousel Updated with Larger Graphics

Google is testing a new design for the podcast carousel in search, with larger images and longer descriptions of the podcast episodes. This has not been fully rolled out yet.

Podcast Carousel Updated with Larger Graphics

Local Linear TV Inventory Available in DV360

Local linear TV inventory will soon be available to Display & Video 360 customers in the US. You’ll be able to access inventory from local TV stations affiliated with national broadcast networks through a linear TV line item in the TV insertion order. You’ll need to enable access to WideOrbit TV buying in your partner settings.

Build Your Own Performance Reports in Google Merchant Center

Google seems to be rolling out a new reporting feature in Google Merchant Center that allows you to build your own performance report. You should be able to access this under the “Performance” tab.

Brodie Clark spotted the update and posted on Twitter that he is “seeing new reporting functionality (both paid/unpaid) in Google Merchant Center. Wasn’t there previously, at least in Australia. From an SEO POV, allows you to create custom dashboards for Surfaces Across Google data.”

Build Your Own Performance Reports in Google Merchant Center

New Community Feed in Google Maps

Google has added a new community feed in the Explore tab of Google Maps. The feed shows the latest reviews, photos and posts added by local experts and people you follow, as well as food and drink merchants and articles from publishers.

“Wondering if your favorite Mexican restaurant has added a new dish to the menu? If you follow them on Maps, you’ll get their updates in your feed.”

New Community Feed in Google Maps

New Layouts for Discovery Ads

Discovery Ads now offer two new immersive layouts with a new 4:5 portrait aspect ratio to showcase your products and services more prominently while consumers scroll. Lead form extensions also mean users can share their information with you directly from your ad in Gmail.

New Layouts for Discovery Ads

Google is also making things easier by providing more insights with detailed forecasting and you can now set up audience exclusions during campaign creation.

Message with Customers Via Google Maps

Google is now rolling out the ability for verified businesses to message with customers directly in the Google Maps app. Once messaging is turned on from your Business Profile, you can reply to customers directly on Google Maps from the business messages section in the “Updates” tab.

Message with Customers Via Google Maps

Following soon, you’ll also be able to see your messages from Google Search (via the Customers menu on your profile) and message customers from your computer. In addition, customers can now start a conversation from any post you create. If they try to call you and there’s no answer, they’ll be prompted to send you a message.

See messages from Google Search


Updated Performance Insights on Search and Maps

This month, Google is rolling out additional metrics with updated performance insights on Search and Maps. You’ll see a more detailed list of search queries customers use to find your business on Google and next year you’ll see updates that show whether customers found your business via Google Maps or Search and if they searched from a computer or mobile device. All of your performance data will be available for up to six months.

Google December 2020 Core Update

Google announced it is rolling out a new core update today, the December 2020 core update. This is the third core update for 2020. It has been 7 months since the last one, much longer than previous updates.

Google stated “the December 2020 Core Update is now rolling out live. As is typical with these updates, it will typically take about one to two weeks to fully roll out.”


Thank You for Reading

Have you noticed any changes from Google this week?

Check back next Friday for the latest from Google This Week.


Paul Hewett

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